2024 is the Year of Financial Data Intelligence
January 18, 2024 | 2 min read
Financial data aggregation, also known as account aggregation, is the process of bringing together information from different financial accounts into a single place. It enables consumers to connect and view their checking accounts, savings accounts, investment accounts, credit card accounts, mortgages, HSAs, FSAs, and much more to gain a comprehensive picture of their finances.
There are a number of financial data aggregators that help facilitate this process across the world. In the United States, financial data aggregation has existed since the mid-1990s when banks and credit unions created the first digital banking applications. Today, as the majority of consumers have 3 to 5 financial accounts with various banks, credit unions, or other financial providers, it’s no surprise that financial data aggregation is more important than ever.
Without financial data aggregation, consumers must look across a multitude of financial accounts to try to manage their financial life. On the other side, financial providers only glimpse a fragment of a consumer’s financial picture and lack visibility into where consumers are sharing data from their systems with others.
There are several ways that financial institutions and fintechs can enable consumers to link their financial accounts today:
However, with screen scraping and whitelisted IPs, connections frequently break and consumers are left wondering who has access to their data while businesses have little visibility into where data is shared. This leads to frustration and could potentially cost businesses customers in the long run. Learn more about the benefits of account aggregation and how it works.
That’s why the future of financial data aggregation is centered on Open Banking and Open Finance. Open Finance puts the consumer in control of their data, and enables financial institutions and fintechs to deliver more personalized money experiences that drive better outcomes for consumers. You can read more about the benefits of Open Finance.
However, the U.S. and Canada are still on the road to Open Finance. In the United States, we’ve reached an important milestone in making sure consumers have the right to access and control their financial information with the announcement of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) notice of proposed rulemaking for personal financial data rights under Dodd-Frank Act Section 1033. In Canada, plans are underway but nothing concrete has been shared as of yet.
As Open Finance continues to take hold, we list several major financial data aggregators in the United States that play a key role in the financial ecosystem. We start with MX for obvious reasons.
MX’s account aggregation solutions enable consumers to easily connect and view all of their financial accounts in one place — and give financial providers full visibility into consumer financial data to better meet their needs. In addition to connecting accounts, MX also enables financial institutions and fintechs to surface insights from transaction data, and build better money experiences that grow their business and improve consumer outcomes, as well as personal financial management, financial insights and mobile banking.
Finicity, which launched its first financial product in 2000, has since grown to provide financial data APIs, credit decisioning tools, and financial wellness solutions. It was acquired by Mastercard in 2020.
Yodlee was founded in 1999 and purchased by Envestnet in 2015. The company offers data aggregation, with a focus on investment data, and data analytics. Envestnet partners with advisors, banks, wealth management and brokerage firms, RIAs, and other companies.
Plaid was founded in 2013 with an initial aim to be a money management tool but has since pivoted to help companies — mainly fintechs — aggregate data. In 2019, Plaid acquired Quovo, which offers an API management toolkit that helps clients connect to financial data. Plaid also recently announced the formation of a new entity that will serve as a consumer reporting agency that will build solutions that deliver ready-made credit risk insights using this information.
Akoya was spun out of Fidelity into its own company in 2020, but remains owned and operated by Fidelity and 11 major U.S. banks. Its focus is on serving as an intermediary between data providers and data recipients through its Akoya Data Access Network.
An article titled "A Buyer's Guide to Data Aggregation" from TearSheet contains more information about all these financial aggregators.
In fact, 72% of consumers would likely seek out a different bank or credit union if their current provider couldn’t connect their financial accounts to financial apps or other online accounts.
We hope you will choose to partner with a financial data aggregator regardless of who you choose to work with. It's one of the best ways to become the primary financial institution for your customers since it gives them the ability to see all their finances in one place — in your portal.
Learn more about how MX enables faster, more dependable connections with MX Account Aggregation Solutions.
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